A bit of fun – because lockdown wasn’t. Here are some lockdown things that really surprised me…
I learned that I could miss people as keenly now as I did as a teenager
I’d thought that this sensation had dulled with age; it has not.
I realised, I’m not an introvert
I always thought I was uncomfortable in crowds, but looking back, that was probably lack of confidence, a self-fulfilling fear of not fitting in. I remember walking through a local festival before lockdown. There were children in costumes, and adults hugging or holding each other’s arms and shoulders. After the parade, there were street parties, foods from everywhere, beer and music, and people talking, singing, dancing. I loved it. I miss crowds.
I find myself revisiting little flashback memories. On a school field, a teacher, whom I’d not seen in a while, said, “Walk with me,” and took my arm as we chatted and walked. Walk with me. What lovely, natural warmth. Just walking and chatting, in the sunshine, with someone nice. Simple, perfect pleasures.
During lockdown, work’s been a challenge but also a godsend, with lovely people whose warmth manages to journey across the internet. I’m only now realising just how much I enjoy the company of others.
In 11 months, I didn’t have time to read a single adult novel
In the moments I could grab, I read with my children.
I got angry with someone
I (almost) never feel angry, but during lockdown, while stressed and exhausted, I allowed myself to feel angry when someone hurt me (by accident, no issue) and then refused to talk. Having something bad happen feels unfortunate, but not being allowed to talk, or be heard, is excruciating.
I let go and moved on, but it was an interesting insight into how people are, and how anger and our reactions to it can be steered by vulnerability.
I learned that I can present to groups of people
In Teams and Zoom meetings, it’s impossible to sit in a corner quietly and follow up with meeting notes, as would be tempting in real life. Now, more than ever, we’re required to step up and speak up, to reach out with our voices. I did this daily throughout lockdown. A lifelong fear of public speaking was knocked out of me by necessity.
I grew fat
I’ve not been this fat before; it feels like I’m inside a strange, gelatinous casing, and although it’s funny, I don’t like it.
I don’t like mess
I can cope – let’s not be precious – but I derive actual physical comfort from a tidy environment.
A cancelled holiday in February half-term might provide an opportunity to redesign my cluttered home space to accommodate work and school in a quieter, cleaner, more practical way.
Advocaat is delicious
Really good. Looks very weird, but tastes like Baileys and custard. Worth a go.
(I also love Marmite.)
Lockdown also confirmed things that I already knew
I saw, all the way through, that most people are basically good, that we help one another, that family and friends are everything, that I need to run and be outside, that I love books, that I need to write, even if it’s just stupid blog posts that I delete later, and that we need the elements; the rain, wind, sun – the earth, forests and sea, and all the creatures they hold. Wildlife, and the great outdoors, are my comforts.
What’s everyone else discovered, in this weird and, frankly, less than entirely magical lockdown journey?